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newbie question as prospective buyer
11-22-2010, 12:17 AM
Post: #1
newbie question as prospective buyer
Hey there folks,

I'm wondering whether I should buy the A-200 or C-200, or maybe not--was hoping someone could tell me if either would suit my situation.

I've got a Mac Pro and Macbook running on my home network, which is connected by an Asus RT-n16 802.11n router. I'm about to get a DNS-323 NAS (which apparently has an iTunes media server built in) and put a 1TB drive in it. I will be setting up an iTunes library on the NAS once it arrives.

Basically, I want to be able to stream my downloaded DivX movies and mp3 files (either from within iTunes, or just the raw files) from the NAS, and play them on my HDTV. It has to be done wirelessly, since my router and NAS are downstairs, while my TV is upstairs in my house.

I just want a simple device that I can turn on, see my NAS listed on the network, select a folder from it like "Movies" or "Music", find the file I want to play, and go. No muss, no fuss.

Is that "doable" with either of the Popcorn Hour devices? I'm a little confused about how they interact with, say, an iTunes library (if at all), and whether they can co-exist happily in a networked environment that has iTunes library files as well as DivX files lying around on the NAS.

Hope my question is clear enough--thanks!

Popcorn Hour A-210 + Denon AVR-791 receiver + Samsung LNT-5265f 52" TV (HDMI connections among all)
Synology DS411+ NAS w/two 2TB drives
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11-23-2010, 08:56 AM
Post: #2
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
Get the new A210. I first bought an A200 but the fan noise was too much, and I didn't care for the plastic case. I then got the C200 which I really, really like. However, had the A210 been available then I probably would have bought that since a Blu-Ray player was not a priority at the time.

We are basically all Apple here and the C200 fits in very well. The interaction with iTunes is a little less obvious. The DNS-323 ( which I have) will play an itunes compatible server as well as other music serving software ( basically all the Linux servers so similar things). That would be for music. Getting the C200 to see iTunes from my Mac's has never been obvious. In any case I have ATV's for that and AirPlay oriented activities.

The Mac's see iTunes from the media servers on Linux systems just fine ( DNS-323 being one).

Using the Mac as a file server to the PCH-C200 is also trivial. Actually, they really do live nicely together. Have a look at Oversight which is pretty nice.

philip
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11-23-2010, 10:20 AM
Post: #3
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
MyiHome has some itunes integration:-
http://www.networkedmediatank.com/wiki/i...hp/MyiHome
If you download the manual you can see how.

A400: SD Card(Apps), HDMI C200: USB(Apps), BD ROM (SH-B083L(SB01)), HDMI
CAT6 Wired Network: TV Panasonic TX-P42G20, HP ProCurve 1400-8G, Netgear GS-608/605, Synology CS407
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11-24-2010, 09:14 PM (This post was last modified: 11-24-2010 09:18 PM by StarbuckII.)
Post: #4
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
Canadave.

Be prepared for LOTS of time with the manual & a bit of geek. A number of aspects of the PCH C200 are vague to ambiguous.

If your NAS supports Samba & NFS you should be good to go with minimal
issues. When you buy your PCH, immediately update the firmware.

Then in settings set up the network connection to your router.
Then make sure that the NMT apps are installed & start them.
Particularly Samba Share & NFS. Name the Samba workgroup the same
as your Router workgroup. That will make discovery of your NAS device
pretty easy.

Most NAS Appliances support Samba Share & or NFS.
You will most likely want and or need a HD inside the C200. There are some hacks that will let you marry a 3.5" 2TB drive to a BD player internal to the PCH. There is also native mount support for a 2.5" drive inside but obviously your capacity will be limited.

PCH is a pretty cool device for what it does. Just make sure before you buy that your totally clued in as to what it does, and what it doesn't. Do not use any other references to it online that are not specifically on the PCH website or referenced here as valid.

Also test it with some audio files from your system as some people have reported having issues with poor quality audio from the PCH with some types of HD MP4 files.

You will not really get the itunes interface to work on this device so do not be fooled into thinking so. The inferface could really use some work, but it is pretty cool that it can pull tons of metadata on movies you have stored on your NAS. It is almost like a PPV screen, cover art, full bios, storyline year genre etc. That part is pretty nice.

If I were you, I would try to find somebody in your market that has one. Ask to see it in operation. See if it is for you. It's an interesting device. For me, I would wish for the Popbox & the PCHC200 to get married & have little C300s that have the full interface benefits of each device, letting them be identical with the exception of accessible drive bays.

read a lot, call the office in Cali & talk to somebody there. it never hurts to speak to the actual company.
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11-25-2010, 03:11 AM
Post: #5
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
(11-24-2010 09:14 PM)StarbuckII Wrote:  You will not really get the itunes interface to work on this device so do not be fooled into thinking so. The inferface could really use some work, but it is pretty cool that it can pull tons of metadata on movies you have stored on your NAS. It is almost like a PPV screen, cover art, full bios, storyline year genre etc. That part is pretty nice.

Does the NMJ only work with a NAS though?

I can get it to work with an attached USB HDD, but not on my networked PC. I'm not even sure if it's possible.

I've tried everything possible and researched heaps, and no luck.

Any ideas, or am I missing something?
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11-25-2010, 03:15 AM
Post: #6
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
(11-25-2010 03:11 AM)Swimmer32 Wrote:  Does the NMJ only work with a NAS though?

I can get it to work with an attached USB HDD, but not on my networked PC. I'm not even sure if it's possible.

I've tried everything possible and researched heaps, and no luck.

Any ideas, or am I missing something?

yes it works with network storage make sure the pch has write access to the network storage.
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11-25-2010, 03:46 AM
Post: #7
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
(11-25-2010 03:11 AM)Swimmer32 Wrote:  Does the NMJ only work with a NAS though?

I can get it to work with an attached USB HDD, but not on my networked PC. I'm not even sure if it's possible.

I've tried everything possible and researched heaps, and no luck.

Any ideas, or am I missing something?

IT will work with USB, NAS, other PCs as well as internal HDs. It will basically access any storage on your network.

Also make sure that you have installed & started NFS & Samba Share. If they are not running you will not see the network.
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11-25-2010, 03:49 AM
Post: #8
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
(11-25-2010 03:46 AM)StarbuckII Wrote:  IT will work with USB, NAS, other PCs as well as internal HDs. It will basically access any storage on your network.

Also make sure that you have installed & started NFS & Samba Share. If they are not running you will not see the network.

You will see the network fine without installing the apps and starting the service. all the apps do is let a pc access the pch. A pch without an internal drive will access a network fine
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11-25-2010, 04:06 AM
Post: #9
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
(11-25-2010 03:15 AM)halfelite Wrote:  yes it works with network storage make sure the pch has write access to the network storage.

I'll give it another go when I get home tonight, but I have tried this.

I've shared folders, and shared them with "everyone" and given that user group access to read, write and delete but still can't view/sort them through the jukebox section.

At least I know it's possible now, so I'll continue to work at this until I get it working.
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11-25-2010, 04:41 AM
Post: #10
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
(11-25-2010 04:06 AM)Swimmer32 Wrote:  I'll give it another go when I get home tonight, but I have tried this.

I've shared folders, and shared them with "everyone" and given that user group access to read, write and delete but still can't view/sort them through the jukebox section.

At least I know it's possible now, so I'll continue to work at this until I get it working.

Since none of the apps are required you have a networking issue of some kind. Did you let the PCH discover the network?

Are you using cable or WiFi?

All I know was before I started those apps on mine, I had a heck of a time seeing any of the devices beyond the router. Maybe it was just how it happened but I am a noob compared to half so he is probably right.
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11-25-2010, 05:35 AM
Post: #11
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
(11-25-2010 04:41 AM)StarbuckII Wrote:  Since none of the apps are required you have a networking issue of some kind. Did you let the PCH discover the network?

Are you using cable or WiFi?

All I know was before I started those apps on mine, I had a heck of a time seeing any of the devices beyond the router. Maybe it was just how it happened but I am a noob compared to half so he is probably right.

I've had my PCH for a few months now, and have had no problems with it.

I stream fine over Ethernet over Power. I switched over to this as I had problems with wireless and it was unrelaible for me.

I'm sure it's a problem with write access or something as has been mentioned above, but thought I had tried this before.

I'll give it another go, failing that, I must be missing something else.
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11-25-2010, 10:35 AM
Post: #12
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
Argh.

Got it working. I didn't realise I had to change the security permission as well as the sharing rights.

One other question though.

It still seems to work without _any_ storage device attached - Thumbdrive or HDD.

My question is, is where does it store it?

It's obviously using its own memory somewhere.

If I plug in a thumbdrive, would it use this memory instead?
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11-25-2010, 10:47 AM
Post: #13
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
Where does it store what? Do you mean the NMJ database, if so it will create a folder called nmj_database at the location of your share.

A400: SD Card(Apps), HDMI C200: USB(Apps), BD ROM (SH-B083L(SB01)), HDMI
CAT6 Wired Network: TV Panasonic TX-P42G20, HP ProCurve 1400-8G, Netgear GS-608/605, Synology CS407
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11-25-2010, 10:58 AM
Post: #14
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
(11-25-2010 10:47 AM)chris57 Wrote:  Where does it store what? Do you mean the NMJ database, if so it will create a folder called nmj_database at the location of your share.

Yeah, the DB.

Awesome. I never noticed that in the folder/location.

Thanks matey.
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11-25-2010, 07:40 PM (This post was last modified: 11-25-2010 07:44 PM by StarbuckII.)
Post: #15
RE: newbie question as prospective buyer
Glad you got it working. of all the set top boxes out there PCH is really the best at connecting to external storage. The interface software still really needs some attention, but overall the device is improving. mfg response in Cali is still MIA but I hope that they will fix that as well.
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